If you have hearing aids, you should be able to hear, right? When they aren’t working properly, it can be thoroughly infuriating, it’s a real “You had ONE job” situation. Luckily, your hearing aids should have no issue doing their job if you properly maintain them.
Before you do anything drastic, look at this list. If it’s not one of these common problems, it might be time to pay us a visit to ensure there isn’t a more substantial issue. For example, your hearing aids may need recalibration, or your hearing could have changed.
Potential Pitfall: Low Batteries
While hearing aid batteries have gotten considerably smaller and lifespans are getting better, the batteries still have to be occasionally replaced or recharged. That means that it’s important to maintain your hearing aids’ batteries. The first thing you need to do if your hearing aid starts to fail or cut in and out is check the battery.
The fix: Keep ‘em Fresh
Investing in a battery tester, especially if you like to stock up, is a practical idea. Even if you keep batteries sealed until it’s time to use them, always a smart idea, they have a limited shelf life, and so the last batteries in that huge pack you bought months ago probably won’t last as long as the first few did. Another trick: Wait five minutes after you open new batteries before you install them. This gives the zinc time to become active, and can possibly help the batteries last longer.
Potential Pitfall: Gross Things Like Wax And Grime
Regardless of how clean you keep your ears, and if you have a hard time hearing, you’re a lot more likely than the average person to pay attention to earwax, your hearing aids will accumulate debris and dirt. If you can hear but sounds seem distorted or a bit off, dirt may be the cause.
The fix: Clean Them Out—And Keep Them Clean!
There are lots of products available specifically for cleaning hearing aids, but you can DIY it with things you already have around the house. Once you’ve disassembled your hearing aids, use a soft, microfiber cloth (like you’d use to clean glasses or smartphone) to wipe down the components.
Simple hygiene habits will really help with keeping your hearing aids clean. Whenever you do something that involves liquid or moisture, such as washing your face or styling your hair, take your hearing aids out and make sure your hands aren’t wet when handling them.
Potential Pitfall: Trapped Moisture
Even a small amount of moisture can really damage your hearing aid (think sweating, not snorkeling). The vent in the hearing aid and the battery can even be impacted by humidity in the air. Problems ranging from distortion to static or even crackling may happen depending on how much moisture is inside. They might even seem to quit altogether.
The fix: Keep ‘em Dry
Keep the battery door open when you store your hearing aid overnight and any longer than that, take the battery out. It takes almost no effort and guarantees that air can circulate, and any captured moisture can get out.
A cool, dry place is the best spot to store your hearing aids. The bedroom is a smart spot, skip the bathroom or kitchen. Although the latter is convenient, the steam from a hot shower is specifically what you don’t want. You will likely want to purchase a hearing aid storage box if you live in an overly humid environment. Most versions use a desiccant in the form of a little moisture absorbing packet, but some more expensive versions remove moisture with electronics.
None of these are working out? It may be time to talk to us.